Other Names: Lemon fish, Crab eater, Black kingfish
Identification & Biology: The scientific name for cobia is Rachycentron canadum, which is derived from two Greek words: rachis (vertebral column) and kentron (sharp point). This name refers to their 7-9 extremely sharp, retractable, dorsal spines. Cobia bears a striking resemblance to a shark. It is the only species in the family Rachycentridae. Remoras (Family Echeneidae) are their closest relative.
Range & Habitat: A tropical and subtropical fish found throughout the world except in the eastern Pacific. Found in numerous habitats, silty, sandy and rocky. Also frequents reefs and mangroves. Feeds on crabs, fish and squid. Reproduces during the hot months. Generally found alone.
Visitors who stop in Makung, the administrative center of the Penghu archipelago, or at Paisha and Hsiyu, can take in the "Cobia Festival." A large part of the fishing industry in this archipelago centers around cobia - a long, tapered fish found in tropical and subtropical waters. Naturally it occupies a place of honor in many local dishes.
Market Description: Cobia is highly prized by Japanese food-lovers for its white, firm and very flavorful flesh, perfectly suited to sashimi. When raw, cobia is soft and juicy, comparable to Toro tuna or Chilean sea bass. Cooked, it is flaky, very white and delicious.
Habitat: Tropical, and subtropical waters around the world
Flavor Profile: steak like firm flesh, mild flavor
Fishing Technique: hook & line, Long line
Special Note: Found around the world except the eastern pacific
Suitable sub: Corvina
Buying Tips: Look for flesh that is firm, moist and has a pleasant fresh smell. Wrap well in plastic wrap or place in a covered container. Refrigerate for up to 3 days or you can freeze for up to 3 months.
Recommended Preparation: Cobia can be served fried, poached, braised or served in soup. However, some chefs think it's at its best simply pan-fried.